Stanley Cup Final 2021: Canadiens vs. Lightning odds, NHL picks, Game 5 predictions from proven hockey expert

The Tampa Bay Lightning needed seven games to defeat the Calgary Flames to win the first Stanley Cup championship in franchise history in 2004. Last year, it took Tampa Bay six contests to get past the Dallas Stars and hoist the Cup as NHL champions for the second time. The Lightning hope to reduce the number of games needed to repeat as champions again when they host the Montreal Canadiens for Game 5 of the 2021 Stanley Cup Final on Wednesday. Tampa Bay had the opportunity to sweep the best-of-seven series on Monday but squandered it, falling 3-2 in overtime at Montreal.

The puck is set to drop at 8 p.m. ET at Amalie Arena. The latest Lightning vs. Canadiens odds from William Hill Sportsbook list Tampa Bay as the -225 favorite (risk $225 to win $100) on the money line, while Montreal is the +195 underdog. The over-under for total goals scored is five. Before making any Canadiens vs. Lightning picks or 2021 Stanley Cup Final predictions, you need to see what SportsLine NHL expert Matt Severance has to say.

Severance is a well-connected writer and handicapper who has worked in the industry since 2005. He is a whopping 150-95 in his last 245 NHL picks, returning almost $1,800 for the $100 bettor.

Now, Severance has set his sights on Lightning vs. Canadiens. You can head to SportsLine now to see his picks. Here are several NHL betting lines and trends for Canadiens vs. Lightning:

  • Lightning vs. Canadiens moneyline: Tampa Bay -225, Montreal +195 
  • Lightning vs. Canadiens over-under: 5 goals 
  • Lightning vs. Canadiens spread: Tampa Bay -1.5 
  • TB: Four of the Lightning’s seven losses this postseason have come in overtime 
  • MON: Montreal overcame a 3-1 series deficit against Toronto in the first round

Featured Game | Tampa Bay Lightning vs. Montreal Canadiens

Why the Lightning can win

Tampa Bay has had no problem bouncing back from a loss in the last two postseasons. The Lightning are 14-0 following a playoff setback since being swept by Columbus in the first round in 2019, winning all six such contests this postseason. The Lightning lost a potential Cup-clinching Game 5 to Dallas last year but answered with arguably their best performance of the 2020 playoffs and captured the NHL championship with a 2-0 victory.

The Lightning have been one of the top offensive teams throughout the 2021 NHL Playoffs, scoring a league-high 74 goals and placing second behind Colorado (3.80) with an average of 3.36 per game. They boast the top five scorers this postseason, with Nikita Kucherov ranking first with 32 points after finishing with league-best 34 last year. The 28-year-old Russian right wing, who also is atop the leaderboard in assists with 24, has scored three goals and set up two others in the series.

Why the Canadiens can win

Facing a 3-1 series deficit is not a situation they really want to be in, but going to overtime again in Game 5 would not be a horrible thing for the Canadiens. The club has needed extra time seven times thus far this postseason, emerging victorious on six occasions, while Tampa Bay is 0-4 in such contests. Josh Anderson is becoming a folk hero in Montreal, as he has two overtime winners among his five playoff tallies — making him the eighth player in franchise history to score multiple OT goals in one postseason.

Anderson posted his second two-goal performance of the 2021 Stanley Cup Playoffs in Game 4, with his first tally giving Montreal its first lead of the series. Nick Suzuki notched an assist on the goal for his team-high 16th point of the postseason, while defenseman Alexander Romanov made a big impression in a rare appearance. The 21-year-old Russian, who played in only two of the Canadiens’ first 20 playoff games, scored his first career postseason goal less than nine minutes into the third period to give the club a 2-1 lead.

How to make Lightning vs. Canadiens picks

Severance is leaning under on total goals scored. He’s also found an X-factor that has him jumping all over one side of the money line in Game 5 of the 2021 Stanley Cup Final. You can see his Stanley Cup Final 2021 picks only on SportsLine.

So who wins Lightning vs. Canadiens? And what X-factor makes one side of the money line a huge value? Visit SportsLine now to find out which side of the Canadiens vs. Lightning matchup you need to jump on Wednesday, all from the expert who has crushed his NHL picks, and find out.

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